Mutants, despite their human nature, feature many distinctive aspects in biology, physiology and genetics from their evolutionary predecessors, but also within them.
Homo superior (Human mutants) possess the X-Gene (mutant gene, X-Factor, "mutator gene") positioned on the 23rd chromosome (sexual chromosome). Another account mentions a X-Factor chromosome, or chromosomal X-Factor.
On Earth-616 and on other realities, it is sometimes stated that there are mutant genes, X-Factor chromosomes, or even no clear mutant factors but complex structures. Although, it is often clearly stated that the mutant gene truly exists.
- Please consult this section for more details.
The X-Gene activation leads (via transcription and translation) to the production of an exotic protein. This protein produces chemical signals inducing mutations on other genes, ending up with mutant organisms, variously empowered. The activated mutants, once through a mutation or X-Mutation, are told to be "mutated", which is also told of mutants who suffer further mutations through experimentation.
Aging, puberty, stress, traumas
For most mutants, mutation occurs mostly during puberty "in a high proportion or recorded cases", although activation may occur earlier for some individuals, such as to the age of ten. Some mutants activate at birth or at a very early state of their life, or even before birth, whether due to stress, or naturally, for various reasons. Some activated due to fear, hunger and starvation, and emotional traumas.
See the "early activation" section of this page.
Some mutants, among them the "Homo Killcrop" (or Changelings), are activated at birth. Powered beings activated at birth or before puberty are witnessed with surprise or even defiance towards their mutant status.
Solar radiation has been tied to dramatic rises in mutant birth rates.
Beta particles and irradiation may as well affect the mutation, possibly turning unborn children into mutants when their pregnant mothers are irradiated, enhancing mutant powers for active mutants. The only sure effects of it was the Collective formed in Russia during an experiment involving those issues.
Some factors may as well inhibit and prevent the activation of an X-Gene:
- Rhapsody (Rachel Argosy) was described as a "late bloomer", a case of meningitis slowing her activation until she turned around twenty.
- On Earth-13270, two mutations can't grow and develop alongside each other: Peter Parker had his mutant genes repressed during his adolescence and adulthood, until he lost his mutate powers, and that was when his mutant status emerged.
Effects of mutation
Once activated, the X-Gene leads (via transcription and translation) to the production of an exotic protein. This protein produces chemical signals inducing mutations on other genes, ending up with mutant organisms, variously empowered. The activated mutants, once through a mutation or X-Mutation, are told to be "mutated", which is also told of mutants who suffer further mutations through experimentation.
Mutations have been shown to be really variable, "can be benign or malignant", from little physical mutations (Jazz's mutation consisted in a simple blue skin pigmentation) to vast psionic or reality manipulation capabilities. The physiology of some subjects could also be drastically modified. For example, Beast once met a mutant with brain-bladders.
The feral gene (manifesting in animalistic mutations such as the ones of Feral or Sabretooth) is stated to be more common in mutants than other powers such as flight or telepathy. See the list of characters stated to carry the feral gene.
Doctor Lucius Kleinstein has presented a theory supposing correlation between personality and mutations among mutants, with an example such as Match's fiery temper and mutation. Similar statements and theories exist about the Gamma Mutates' physical transformations and the Inhumans' Terrigenesis.
Generalities by Type of Mutation
Effects of inhibitors
According to Storm, "fine talent like psi tend to be affected before gross ones like metamorphosis", reacting to the fact that Emma Frost had lost her telepathy while being able to use her Secondary Mutation to shift to her diamond form, when she entered the range area of an Inhibitor mutant.
The Secondary Mutation is a phenomenon in which an existing mutant gains additional powers, or a change in appearance.
Viability on cross-breeding
Wakandan scientists even stated that even if there has never been a proven case of genetic incompatibility between humans and mutants, every mutation was different and some effects could perturb the reproduction process.
Influence of mutations in mutant-mutant reproduction
It was stated by Beast that "X-gene-positive parents with radically altered reproductive physiology" could result in unimaginable offspring, speaking of Beak and Angel's larvae hatching after only a few days of pregnancy.
Variability of offsprings' powers
Children of members of the Homo superior race, most often have very similar, exact duplicate, or advanced versions of one or both parents' powers (examples: Lady Mastermind, Martinique Wyngarde, Wallflower, Polaris, Daken, Reine du Rien, Nightcrawler, Nocturne, Siryn, Rachel Summers, Ruby Summers, Megan Summers, Pixie, Josiah Guthrie, Tito Bohusk).
Similar processes occur within the Clan Akkaba, where:
- Many have gray skin, just like their forebear En Sabah Nur.
- Many are shape-shifting mutants, including Inner Council members such as Margaret Slade, her son the fittest Hamilton Slade, or the fittest Kabar Brashir.
- "Lesser" Jack Starsmore possessed fire-breathing powers, like his descendant Jonothon Starsmore.
- Some have pink hair, green eyes, and teleportation powers (emitting a "blink" sound), such as Frederick Slade (who also possessed shapeshifting abilities), and his descendant Clarice Ferguson.
Neither of these results are uncommon when crossbreeding between Homo superior and Humans (Homo sapiens). Familial power similarities are not only passed from parent to child, but can also be common between siblings in first generation mutant families (examples: Frost Family Tree, Xavier Family Tree, Summers and Grey Family Tree, the Proudstar brothers, and the Beaubier twins). Though less common, powers can also vary widely within first generation mutants (examples: Guthrie Family Tree and Rasputin Family Tree) just as with parental power inheritance.
It has been stated that second generation mutants could be mightier than their parents, as they possess often the addition of their parents' powers. A similar statement was made by R.C.X. scientist Nicolas about Nightcrawler, but he was at that time confusing mutants and Warpies.
On Earth-1018, it has been stated by Beast (Dr. Henry McCoy) that the second generations aren't in fact mutants despite their mutant DNA. This statement is however apart from the species statements, but only to be related to the term of "mutants". Similarly, Tom Brevoort considered that if Jean Grey's children had the same powers as herself, "they wouldn't be mutants in the truest sense (though they might still possess an X-gene)".
Human offspring from mutant parents
Factors on mutant conception
Allegedly, the X-Gene can always appear within a human child, but many factors can increase the chances of apparition.
There was a strong belief that mutants' were born due to the exposure of their parents to mutagenics like chemicals[verification needed] and radioactive rays, like Mandrill, Dragoness, Ana Soria, or Hank McCoy, leading the mutants to be thought of as the Children of the Atom.
The House of M (Earth-58163) scientists stated that the mother's home was to remain at exactly 68 degrees to increase chances of Mutant Birth.
It was also advocated to stay away from organic vegetables and rather consume produces treated with MGH and non-filtered water as various environmental factors (while increasing bacteria and viruses spreading) could had positive effects on the human genome.
It is stated that if one or both of the parents are mutants, then mutant birth is almost guaranteed.
Mutants from mutate parents
General beliefs and facts
On quite a similar concept, it has been speculated that mutates were more likely to give birth to mutant children, or that the abilities transmitted by their parents made those children mutants because they were born with those abilities. Some mutants' mutations were stated to be "conditioned by [their] parents' altered genetic structure".
It is stated that with one or both meta-human parents, the chances of generating mutant offspring is increased.
Mutants born from mutate parents include:
- Persuasion (Kara Killgrave) (Purple Man and Melanie Killgrave's daughter), who possesses the same kind of powers as her father.
- Ben Parker of Earth-688 (son of Spider-Man and Gwen Stacy). Ben was stated to possess an extra chromosome, making him a trisomic mutant but displaying the exact same powers as his father.
- Franklin Richards, born from two mutates, who has been noticed to possess an "extremely powerful genetic mutation, conditioned by his parents' altered genetic structure".
- Eleanor Camacho, daughter of the mutate Deadpool (although Deadpool's mutation is due to the implantation of a healing factor derived from the mutant Wolverine).
The Purple Children (Purple Man's other children from other women with similar powers and mutations) genetic status is currently unclear but they were stated by Matt Murdock to be the "next evolutionary step", and later said that he made calls to a school that specializes in "Gifted Youngsters".
That statement has been proved wrong with the case of Daisy Johnson (Quake) who was at first believed to be a mutant, because she developed powers without direct mutation, or "born with abilities". It was hypothesized that she might "have altered cell structure or brainwave activity", and then confirmed that she doesn't have the specific mutant gene, and that their abilities come ""technically [from a] genetic damage, handed down from [her] jerk of a father". It was later revealed that Quake's powers come from Inhuman genes she inherited from her mother and activated by her father's genes that were mutated by the Hyde Formula.
Opposed to the example of Ben Parker, Spider-Girl (May "Mayday" Parker) (daughter of Spider-Man and Mary Jane Watson on Earth-982) was often thought (by fans) to be a mutant for possessing powers (similar to her father's) at birth, but it was stated that she was not a mutant, as she wasn't technically "born with her powers" but "inherited [them] from her father" and was bred true".
Many mutants have alien legacy and it is sometimes stated that this genetic particularity may be involved in the apparition of the X-Gene in babies.
Some powers can act as a catalyst or mutagenic, and lead to the birth of mutant children while they are still in the womb.
Homo superior have been shown to successfully crossbreed with several other genus Homo species (Humans (Homo sapiens), Homo inhumanus, Atlanteans (Homo mermanus), etc.), gods (Asgardians) and other humanoid aliens (Shi'ar, Dire Wraiths, etc.).
Please follow the article on Mutant Genes here.
See the whole article here (upper in the article).
On Earth-13270, two mutations can't grow and develop alongside each other: Peter Parker had his mutant genes repressed during his adolescence and adulthood, until he lost his mutate powers, and that was when his mutant status emerged.
- Secrets of the House of M #1
- What If...? #74
- Excalibur Vol 3 #7
- Astonishing X-Men Vol 3 #27
- X-Force #86
- Uncanny X-Men #380
- Marvel Universe: Millennial Visions #1; Spider-Man: Topping the Clone Saga
- What If...? #88
- X-Men Vol 2 #100
- New X-Men #122
- New X-Men #118
- Spider-Man and the X-Men #1
- X-Force Vol 4 #13
- Marvel Apes #1
- Origins of Marvel Comics #1; Wolverine's page
- Extraordinary X-Men #17
- X-Men: Red #1
- Alpha Flight Vol 3 #1
- Uncanny X-Force #3
- X-Men Phoenix Warsong #1
- X-Factor Vol 3 #11
- Cable & Deadpool #18
- Astonishing X-Men: Xenogenesis #1
- New X-Men #121
- Generation Hope #7-8
- Spectacular Spider-Man Vol 2 #19
- Journey into Mystery #40
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe #7; Jack Winters's Appendix entry
- Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe Vol 2 #8
- New Mutants #94
- X-Men #49
- Amazing Adult Fantasy #14
- Wolverine: First Class #8
- X-Factor #79
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Rhapsody's entry
- New X-Men #141
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Jazz's entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Cable's entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Richards, Franklin's entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Braddock, Jamie's entry
- Astonishing X-Men Vol 3 #28
- Civil War II: Ulysses Infinite Comic #1
- Heroic Age: X-Men #1; Blindfold's entry
- Avengers Vol 4 #29
- Wolverine Vol 2 #312
- Logan (film)
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Match entry
- World War Hulk: Gamma Files #1
- Silent War #4
- New X-Men Vol 2 #36
- Black Panther Vol 4 #16
- X-Men Vol 4 #2
- Runaways #13
- New X-Men #116
- X-Men: Apocalypse vs. Dracula #2
- X-Men: Apocalypse vs. Dracula #3
- X-Men: Millennial Visions #1: "The Offspring"
- Excalibur #63
- X-Men: Millennial Visions #1: "Mutants, Mutants, Everywhere!"
- Tom Brevoort's statement
- X-Men: Gold Vol 2 #22
- Runaways #5
- Runaways Vol 5 #5
- The Gifted (TV series) Season 2 3
- The Pulse House of M Special #1
- X-Factor #77
- Marvel Encyclopedia Vol 2 #1; Mandrill's entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Dragoness' entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Franklin Richards' entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1; Persuasion's entry
- X-Men: The 198 Files #1
- Deadpool Vol 5 #34
- Daredevil Vol 4 #9
- Daredevil Vol 4 #10
- Secret War: From the Files of Nick Fury #1
- Secret War #5
- Secret War #2
- S.H.I.E.L.D. Vol 3 #7
- May Parker (Earth-982)'s Marvel Database page, the 27 November 2014
- May Parker's Comicvine page
- Tom Brevoort's statement on Spider-Girl ("Mayday")'s mutancy
- Alpha Flight #54
- X-Men: Millennial Visions #1: "The Big X-Change"
- X-Men: Evolution Season 3 11
- Uncanny X-Men #427
- All-New Official Handbook of the Marvel Universe A to Z #11
- X-Men: Earth's Mutant Heroes #1